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Two dogs killed woman in 2021 B.C. attack

DNA samples confirm deadly attack on Ping Guo
The discovery of a body drew a large police presence in Pitt Meadows on Aug. 15. 2021. (Shane MacKichan/Special to The News)

Two dogs from a nearby property attacked and killed a woman in a Pitt Meadows blueberry field in 2021, according to a recently released BC Coroner’s report.

However, DNA samples were only taken from the dogs following another death on the neighbouring property where the dogs resided in January, 2023 – about a year and a half after Ping Guo’s body was discovered among the berry bushes on Aug. 15, 2021, by a visitor to Doremi Blueberry Farm Ltd..

The RCMP Integrated Homicide Investigation Team reported Guo’s death to the BC Coroner’s Service.

A Coroner’s report just released on Thursday, April 11, into Guo’s death has concluded it was accidental.

“Ping Guo died of multiple blunt and sharp force injuries sustained in an unwitnessed canid attack,” read the report.

It was the owner of the blueberry farm who called 911 in 2021.

At the time, police treated Guo’s death as suspicious because of her traumatic injuries. And because an animal attack was “strongly suspected” the BC Conservation Service was called in to conduct a concurrent investigation.

The Coroner’s report outlined that a post mortem examination revealed Guo had sustained “fatal traumatic injuries”, mostly on her arms and legs, which were consistent with an attack by a large animal. Conservation officers initially thought she had been attacked by a black bear.

Following DNA analysis of hair and saliva samples, though, conservation officers discovered that the animal or animals that attacked Guo belonged to the dog or wolf family, most likely a domestic animal because of the location of the farm.

The report does not say when those samples were taken.

READ MORE: Family claims vicious dogs killed woman found dead in Pitt Meadows blueberry field

As domestic animal attacks fall outside of the BC Conservation Officers jurisdiction, they concluded their investigation.

Guo’s family filed a notice of civil claim in the Supreme Court of B.C. on Feb. 11, 2022, against Doremi Blueberry Farm Ltd., the registered owners of the blueberry farm Kae-Chang Doong and Changling Zhong, the City of Pitt Meadows, and the owners of the dogs, Baljit Haer, who has since died, and a Jane Doe, claiming the dog or dogs were “aggressive, vicious, and dangerous,” and the death of Guo was due to the negligence of all three groups of defendants.

A response to the civil claim filed in November, 2023, said Haer denied being the owner of an “aggressive, vicious and dangerous dog,” denied the dog had “manifested a propensity to cause harm to others,” and further denied that he was aware or ought to have been aware “of this non-existent manifestation.”

Haer had denied the incident occurred as alleged or at all, but that if it did, occur, is was not the result of, “any act, omission, negligence, fault, or breach of duty, statutory or otherwise” on his part.

ALSO: City of Pitt Meadows denies allegations made by family of woman found dead in blueberry field

However, a person who died on the same neighbouring property in January 2023, had, according to Ridge Meadows police, lacerations and bite marks on their body consistent with an animal attack.

The BC SPCA, say RCMP, also attended the scene, adding that the death was not considered a criminal matter.

DNA samples were then taken from the two dogs, and it was confirmed they were responsible for Guo’s death. The dogs were euthanized on Jan. 3, 2023.

A Coroners Service investigation into the second death has yet to be released.

The coroner made only one recommendation in the report to the City of Pitt Meadows, to review, “all relevant policies and procedures pertaining to reports of potential health and safety bylaw violations.”

Colleen Flanagan

About the Author: Colleen Flanagan

I got my start with Black Press Media in 2003 as a photojournalist.
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